Saturday, June 19, 2004

"Grassroots Bottom-Up Wireless Infrastructure"

Wireless web gets a set of wheels

Wireless hotspots are springing up in buildings and homes all over the world but one New York artist has literally taken the idea onto the streets, turning his bicycle into a wi-fi hub.

Yury Gitman describes himself as a wireless and emerging-media artist and for his latest project has turned to cycle power to create the wireless bike.

It has been capturing the imagination of New York's trendiest urbanites and has been described by one New York paper as one of the hippest hotspots in the city.

"As well as being cool and stylish, it is also mobile," said Mr Gitman.

Grassroots

The wireless bike, or Magicbike as Mr Gitman prefers to call it, is not just a trendy alternative to the wi-fi cafe or office.

It can fulfil an important function in bringing internet connectivity to areas ignored by the traditional telecommunications industry.

"A grassroots bottom-up wireless infrastructure can be formed and pedalled to any place accessible by bicycle," said Mr Gitman.

In a wired city such as New York, he envisages it being used at art and cultural events, public demonstrations and for emergency access.

In communities at the fringe of internet connectivity it could become a more permanent lifeline.

Read the whole article on BBC Online

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